Being Conscious

Because I know what it’s like to consciously and unconsciously act.

So it boils down to “because I say so”.

I say that, because I know the difference, and you are arguing for the sake of arguing.

Even if you claimed you couldn’t act or make choices, it wouldn’t change my experience or cause me to question the reliability of my experience.

There seems to be a gap in communication. I’m not asking you if you can act or make choices. I never claimed that you could not do those things. I can act and I can make choices. THAT’S NOT WHAT I AM ASKING!!!

You claim that if consciousness was the product of bodily functions that you would not be able to act or choose. I am asking for the evidence that backs this claim. All I am getting in return is you repeating the claim or saying “I just know it”. Do you understand why that is not an explanation or evidence for the claim?

This is the question you asked.

Materialism reduces consciousness to bodily function by reducing consciousness to an illusion that has no real interaction with the world.

I see consciousness as being dependent on the body (in this world), and yet I see it having a real interaction with the world

You might call me a soft (or fuzzy) dualist, in that I don’t think the lines or spaces can be defined where consciousness exists or originates. That part I’m open to exploring and learning, but it would be intellectual suicide to deny what I know to be true about myself, that like you, I can act and make choices.

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So why can’t consciousness be real and still be the result of bodily functions? What if Materialism is wrong?

(And we do have evidence for the existence of the supernatural. ; - )

It can, but not at all necessarily exclusively. That is why he confesses to being a dualist.

It is. ; - )

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And once you admit that you can act, you have committed yourself to the view that you are an unmoved mover with regard to the action you cause.

Some may be arguing for materialism due to this consequence whether they realize it or not. As a kind of subliminal perception. Similar maybe to the problem in understanding (or admitting) the impossibility of forming an infinite set through successive addition.

That doesn’t answer the question.

So why can’t consciousness be real and still be the result of bodily functions?

I never said it cannot

Could have fooled me.

“Consciousness cannot be separated from the body (in this world) and it can’t be reduced to bodily function either.”–heymike3

The self is contingent in being and necessary with regard to its action.

I’m pretty sure I’ve written this to you before.

Call it fuzzy dualism.

Sometimes it appears I’m fooling you, and sometimes it appears you are fooling yourself

I finished the book and it was curious to see how the author continued to make the case for how the self is an illusion, while talking about the heightened sense of consciousness that drugs produce. Also interesting were several studies the author covers that show how multiple conscious entities can be present in a person, and how the self integrates them in the delusion of a singular self.

This book is worth taking to heart as there is much that can be used by the Christian apologist to highlight the beauty of a God that doesn’t call us to put an end to the self, but redeems us through his love.

For “the chief end of man is to glorify God by enjoying him forever.”


Sorry to dig so far back in the comments, but just read this and it also reminds me of how a dragonfly catches it’s prey. It seemingly has to make multiple complex decisions to intercept a flying insect. However, if you are a sailor, you are probably aware that to determine if you are on a collision course with another boat, they will maintain the same relative angle of position to you until you crash. If that angle changes, they will either pass in front or behind you. Thus the dragonfly only has to adjust it’s flight to maintain the same relative angle to ultimately arrive at the same point in space, very little brain power required


That is so cool, Phil! How many years have I been teaching geometry, and only just now I realize what a cool application that makes for teaching similar triangles to students. Thanks.

[I can blame it on being from Kansas. Not a lot of maritime shipping going on. But could apply the same thing if your car and another car (still far off) are both approaching the same intersection at constant speed. Will you both arrive at that intersection at the same time and crash? Or will one car cross first?]


A concluding quote from Blackmore’s Consciousness: A Very Short Introduction:

“The dualism between ‘me’ and ‘the world’ disappears into non-duality.”

And the final statement in the book:

“Both intellectually and in our own experience we should be able to stop being deluded and see through all those illusions of self, free will, and consciousness.”

Sam Harris wrote what was ever so ironic to this once struggling solipsist, that “it is, at least in principle, an experience that is available to anyone.”

Or pseudo-Dionysius, “here being neither oneself nor someone else, one is supremely united by a completely unknowing inactivity of all knowledge, and knows beyond the mind by knowing nothing.” And again “to the extent that every one of us is capable of it.”

The loss of self, non-duality, and solipsism are, once you have eyes to see, indistinguishable from one another.

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Trains are the other vehicles that you don’t want to guess about, especially in Kansas! But I love the hills in northern Kansas.

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Reminds me of baseball. If you are batting and the ball is not moving but only getting bigger, then duck. The reverse is true for the pitcher on a hit ball. I’ve been on both sides of that lesson.


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